How can one treat mouth ulcers in children?

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Loraine Prothero

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How can one treat mouth ulcers in children?
« on: 29/05/2010 01:30:02 »
Loraine Prothero  asked the Naked Scientists:
Mouth Ulcers in Children.
My daughter has been getting mouth ulcers for 4 years (she is now nearly 7 years).  She gets upto 15 ulcers at a time on her tongue and inside her mouth, on her gums.  During the worst bouts, she is listless and unable to attend school, eat or even drink much. 

These bouts last up to 10 days, and sometimes happen at  four to five week intervals. 

I have seen a paedatrician who did extensive tests to see if her immune system was compromised in any way, but they all came back negative & in every other aspect she is a healthy child who is developing normally. 

The paedetrician prescribed antiviral treatments (Adco-Acyclovir 200mg 8 hourly) but this does not seem to make any difference.  I have seen alternative therapists and have tried in the past taking Lysine (no-one could tell me what dose to give her, so I was trying 500mg daily), large quantities of bufffered vitamin c, plant steroids & sterolins, selenium & a good multi-vitamin.  I have  also tried anti-biotic creams in her nose and pro-biotics.  But still no real change. 

Several doctors have told me to wait for her to out grow it, but the impact on her school work is now becoming considerable. 
I would be incredibly grateful if you could give me any advice or possible treatments to try.  I am also wondering whether the repeated doses of Acyclovir treatment is actually further compromising her immune system.
Thank you
Loraine Prothero
Johanesburg, South Africa        

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« Last Edit: 29/05/2010 01:30:02 by _system »


Offline techmind

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How can one treat mouth ulcers in children?
« Reply #1 on: 11/12/2010 12:37:25 »
Fortunately I've never suffered mouth ulcers to the extent described.

However, for the occasional ulcer, in my family the 'cure' has always been the following:
Last thing at night find a "Milk of Magnesia" tablet (a traditional over-the-counter indigestion remedy, magnesium hydroxide) and wedge the tablet in the mouth against the ulcer before going to bed. Do not chew it.
In my experience, one night's treatment cures the issue. Rarely a second night is needed.

Obviously it only works for ulcers on the outside of the gum, or inside of the cheek where you can physically wedge the tablet (or part of a tablet).
"It has been said that the primary function of schools is to impart enough facts to make children stop asking questions. Some, with whom the schools do not succeed, become scientists." - Schmidt-Nielsen "Memoirs of a curious scientist"



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How can one treat mouth ulcers in children?
« Reply #2 on: 11/12/2010 12:44:09 »
Try Bonjela.


Offline CliffordK

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How can one treat mouth ulcers in children?
« Reply #3 on: 12/12/2010 21:58:18 »
It sounds like you need a diagnosis.  Have you seen a gastroenterologist?

Acyclovir is a specific treatment for herpes and related viruses.  They are a common virus that can cause recurring cold sores and ulcers.  Herpetic lesions would tend to be in the same spot every time...  I.E.  more likely on the one side of the mouth than the other.  If these are all over the mouth, it is less likely a recurring herpetic lesion, and Acyclovir wouldn't help.

Other chronic problems that come up would include HIV/AIDS (I assume you've tested for it), as well as Crohn's Disease (which might be associated with other GI issues such as bloody stools, diarrhea, etc).

Celiac disease also is on the list.  It is an intolerance to gluten and wheat flour.

Bonjela may be contraindicated in young children due to its aspirin content.  Consult your physician.

There are a number of "home remedies".  I was always told to rinse my mouth out with salt water.  But, for the occasional cold-sore (single), especially on my gums, I will take salt and apply it directly to the cold sore until it dissolves in the mouth (a few times a day).  It stings for a minute or so, but the cold sore always disappears within a day or so.  I assume the Milk of Magnesia (above) does the same thing.

Diffuse cold sores would require some kind of rinse (salt water, milk of magnesia, mouthwash, etc)

I'm also seeing notes on something called "Magic Mouthwash" which is certainly worth trying.

There is a lot of information on this site.  Follow the links.

This site has a lot of info too: